Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.A.
October 20th - 22nd, 2006
Shihan Kenneth Funakoshi, 9th Dan, (FSKA)
Chief Instructor, Funakoshi Shotokan Karate Association
Stephen, Carolyn, and Sempai Uwe
pose with me on the steps of the Pavilion
Another gathering of FSKA karate-ka from around the world
Once again the Funakoshi Shotokan Karate Association held its Annual FSKA World Championship Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada and for the last time the 40,000 square foot Pavilion at the Stardust Hotel, located on the famous Las Vegas strip, played host to the event. Instructors, students, family members, and friends, as usual came from a great many countries around the world including, the U.S.A., Canada, France, England, Germany, South Africa, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Macedonia, and Puerto Rico, just to name a few. As always this event is a great opportunity for all of us to renew old friendships, to make new ones, and to promote the art of Shotokan Karate.
This the tournament had the distinction of being the last event ever to take place in Pavilion as the Stardust Hotel is being demolished to make room for a new facility which will probably take several years to complete. As a result, the 9th Annual FSKA World Championship Tournament will be taking place in town where the very first FSKA World Championship Tournament was held, Crawley, England. The tournament is scheduled for the Fall of 2007 so please watch the official FSKA web site for future details.
On the afternoon of October 21st prior to the official start of the tournament many students took the opportunity to join Shihan Funakoshi, Sensei Kevin Funakoshi, and Sensei Kyle Funakoshi, for a series of seminars covering kihon and kata.
Black belts training the kata Unsu with Sensei Kyle
Black belts training kihon with Shihan Funakoshi
These courses are always heavily attended by senior students and senseis alike as it is an excellent opportunity to get first hand knowledge from the very best instructors that the FSKA has to offer.
Thank you Shihan Funakoshi and Sensei Kyle
There is no better place to learn the art of karate than on the dojo floor, or at a quality seminar. Videos, books, magazines, and other source material simply cannot take the place of firsthand experience under the watchful eye of a master, as Sempai Amy, Carolyn, and her father, Stephen, found out this year. I would like to take this opportunity to once again thank Shihan Funakoshi for his time, and his knowledge, which he so willingly passes on to all of his students.
A light moment between events
One of the things I always look forward to at any FSKA event is renewing friendships. Sensei Omar Vera of Puerto Rico is an excellent karate-ka and I have greatly enjoyed the time I have spent in his company over the past five years.
Saturday - Kata

The Parade of Nations
Saturday morning saw a great many countries once again represented at this annual event. With the lineup extending the length of the competition floor you just knew that the day promised to be an eventful one. As usual Saturday was devoted entirely to kata.
Jessie takes our first medal
For the second year in a row Jessie came home with a medal, this time it was a silver in kata while the gold medal and the bronze medal were awarded to two young students from South Africa.
Judges and the juniors
Each ring had a Chief Judge as well as four supporting judges. In ring three this year I was joined by Sensei Roger St. Pierre, (Yondan) Sensei Gary Cross, (Shichidan) and Sensei Canace Monteil, (Rokudan). Throughout the course of the day we were kept very busy with a steady stream of competitors, in a wide variety of age categories and divisions, all of whom I must say were a credit to their respective dojos.
Women's Black Belt Division
As always the level of competition in the women's black belt division is excellent and this year's event was no exception. In the Chair as Chief Judge I found that timing, kime, and attention to detail were displayed by all of the students and I am sure that their performance was enjoyed by all who watched them compete.
Reviewing the kata
Shihan Funakoshi and his son's Sensei Kyle and Sensei Kevin review the results. Both of his son's joined Shihan Funakoshi on his recent trip to Japan for Sensei Tesukio Asai's funeral which was held in September.
Team Kata
Team South Africa always performs well in kata and this year we saw another strong performance from their squad which allowed them to medal in this category. I expect that in the not too distant future South Africa will play host to the Annual FSKA World Championship Tournament.
Carolyn won Bronze
In her first international tournament Carolyn Simonis took the bronze medal in her kata division. As a regular participant in the adult classes at our dojo Carolyn has developed a good work ethic over the years and I am sure she will continue to do well in future events.
A true gentleman
In past years Sensei Kyle Funakoshi has generously taken the time to visit our dojo to conduct seminars, and officiate at our annual Dan grading that is the highlight of each year's summer camp. He is a gentleman in the truest sense of the word and it is always a pleasure to see him at the tournaments or at the FSKA Honbu dojo in California.
Another win for Canada
In addition to his duties as time keeper and score keeper Sempai Uwe once again took the opportunity to compete in kata. In this his fourth FSKA World Championship Sempai Uwe once again came away with a medal, bronze in men's kata.
Silver for Canada
Sempai Cathy Quinn (San Dan) from Victoria took silver in kata at this year's event while the gold went to the U.S.A. Sempai Cathy performed one of her favourite katas, Nijushiho, here she is seen here with the judges who are from left to right, Sensei Chet Kawashige, (Rokudan) Sensei Ernest Lopez, (Godan) Chief Judge Sensei Andre Dulce, (Rokudan) Sensei Anatoliy Naumenko, (Godan) and Sensei Canace Monteil, (Rokudan).
Senior Men's Black Belt Kata
No strangers to the podium once again are, Sempai David Else, (Sandan) who won the bronze medal this year, while Sensei John Boloson, (Godan) won the gold medal, and I won the silver. Both men are excellent competitors and it is always a pleasure to be in their company.
Sunday - Kumite
Two of FSKA's senior instructors
Prior to the start of the kumite competition on Sunday morning Sensei Gary Cross (7th Dan) and Sensei Andre Dulce (6th Dan) enjoyed a quiet moment. Both instructors have been with Shihan Funakoshi's organization for more than thirty-five years.
Senior Men's Black Belt Kumite
Every ring on Sunday was kept busy once again with competitors from more than twenty countries looking for a place on the podium. In the men's over forty division medalists included Sensei Steve Roberts (Godan) England, Sensei Kenny Takada, (Yondan) U.S.A and Sensei Antonio Melo (Yondan) of Portugal, with fourth place going to Sensei Rigo Carrillo (Sandan) U.S.A.
Women's Black Belt Kumite
A hard fought division with Sempai Amy Barnes earning a bronze medal for her efforts.
A spirited competitor
Sempai Thomas Balka loves to compete and this year as a member of the five man U.S.A. team he played a role the team securing the victory over the International Team in the Men's Team Kumite gold medal final.
Team kumite final
Sensei Kyle Funakoshi (6th Dan) awards a point to the International Team. The trophy at the left is awarded each year to the wining team in this event and without a doubt this has to be the highlight of the tournament. This year Team U.S.A. won the event in a very memorable match up.
The end of the tournament for another year
Sempai Thomas Balka, on the right, holds the U.S. flag while posing with members from Poland and the Ukraine. Shihan Funakoshi make annual visits to both countries and his seminars are always well attended. In past years as many as 700 students have turned out to one of his three day seminars.
To one and all
Our dojo is proud to be affiliated with the Funakoshi Shotokan Karate Association, and to support the 8th Annual Funakoshi Shotokan Karate Association's World Championship Tournament. On behalf of all of the students from Westshore Karate Inc. who took part in this year's FSKA World Championship, I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation to Shihan Kenneth Funakoshi, his son's, Sensei Kevin Funakoshi, and Sensei Kyle Funakoshi, as well as all of the other FSKA instructors, judges, time keepers, score keepers, volunteers, and supporters, who helped to make this year's tournament another truly excellent event.
We look forward to seeing all of you next year in Crawley, England in the Fall of 2007, until then, good training.
Part the clouds - see the way.
"The objective of karate-do is to contribute to the evolution
of the human spirit through physical and mental training."
Sensei Peter Lindsay